Do you feel like a weekend full of joy, music and vibrant colours? Pack your suitcase … we have a new plan #BoutiqueWeekend, the April Fair, also known as The Fair of Seville. The celebrations start on 15th April, and end on Saturday, 21st with the traditional firework display.
Firstly, here are interesting facts about these celebrations which take place in the stunning city of Seville. The Fair, which started in 1846, was originally mainly a fair for trading livestock, although these days the focus is on music, flamenco, horses, food and pure enjoyment.
The Fair opens with the night of the “pescaíto”. It’s the night when the locals eat fried fish and the thousands of light bulbs that illuminate the main entrance to the fair and the streets of the “El Real” fairground are officially switched on. The fairground is located in the neighbourhood of “los Remedios” and during the month of April is full of sights and sounds, marquees and attractions. On this night which is known as the “alumbrado” around 350,000 light bulbs are switched on. It has become an event of such social and cultural importance that it has been declared a Festival of International Interest for Tourism!
What to see? What to do? How to dress? What to eat? Where to sleep?
Take note, to experience the Fair like a true local and blend in completely, it’s best to go in traditional dress. For ladies, a flamenco dress, easily recognisable for its bright and cheerful colours and polka dots, fitted at the top and with ruffles at the bottom that reach to the ground. A shawl over the shoulders, large earrings, comb and flowers adorning the hair and of course the traditional handheld fan. For gentlemen, the traditional short jacketed suit. This outfit traditionally in sombre colours is made up of a white shirt with a traditional short Andalusian jacket. A sash is usually worn around the waist. The outfit is completed with tight, high-waisted trousers and boots.
Now that you have the look you are ready to visit the so-called “Casetas” or marquees. Nowadays there are more than a thousand marquees, in the 1,200,000 m2 of the site, a far cry from the original number of just nineteen. Be careful though, not all are open to the public, there are private marquees, where you can only enter with an invitation, they belong to (brotherhoods, clubs, friends’ associations). However, don’t worry if you don’t have an invitation, there are the public marquees, where you can enjoy music, sevillanas and the typical food and drink. The marquees usually have a dance floor for those who dance sevillanas, a beautiful show worth seeing … with palms marking the rhythm, flamenco guitars and a lot of artistry!
The typical drink is El Fino de Jerez or manzanilla (camomile), both are dry white sherries that should be drunk very chilled. Over the last few decades the “Rebujito” has become the most popular drink of this type. It is made by mixing chamomile sherry with lemon and peppermint soda. In the marquees you can enjoy endless varieties of tapas, including the typical fried fish, perhaps the most typical is the “caldo de puchero” a traditional broth.
You mustn’t leave without having enjoyed a horse and carriage ride. This is the only type of transportation allowed inside the fairground and there are also daily horse shows from 12 noon until 8 in the evening with horses beautifully adorned with tassels and bells. Bulls also have a long association with the festivities, and there are a series of bullfights which take place in the bullring or “plaza de toros” of La Real Cavalry Maestranza.
Finally, adjacent to the Fair is the amusement park area, known as “Calle del Infierno” or “Hell Street”, where more than 100 travelling fairground rides and attractions are gathered from all over Spain.
With so much hustle and bustle going on, it’s not uncommon to be up until the small hours of the morning. We recommend that you stay at the Hotel Holos, one of our Boutique Hotels located in one of the most charismatic and tranquil areas of Seville. Take advantage of their current promotion, and if you go to the Fair, you can be eligible for a night’s stay for two people totally free *
💃🕺 Queremos que esta Feria de Abril sea aún más especial. ¡Síguenos y sube tu foto en el Real en Facebook o Instagram y etiquétanos (@hotel_holos y @boutiquehotelspain)! Entre todos los que participéis antes del 22 de abril de 2018 (inclusive) sortearemos una noche para 2 personas en Hotel Holos.
(*consult conditions of participation on Facebook or Instagram).